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Wednesday, January 16 2013

Freedom to Work


“The number of men and women who have deep-seated homosexual tendencies is not negligible. This inclination, which is objectively disordered, constitutes for most of them a trial. They must be accepted with respect, compassion, and sensitivity. Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided. These persons are called to fulfill God's will in their lives and, if they are Christians, to unite to the sacrifice of the Lord's Cross the difficulties they may encounter from their condition.” (#2358)

-- The Catechism of the Catholic Church, Article 6, The Sixth Commandment



Millions of Americans live in states that provide no legal protection against being fired simply for being gay.  A majority of Americans, including over 60% of American Catholics, support federal legislation to prevent anti-gay discrimination in the workplace.  Catholics for Equality supports ENDA, the Employment Non-Discrimination Act, that would outlaw job discrimination based on sexual orientation or gender identity.  Why?  Because every person should have the freedom to find gainful employment, work to support one’s self and family, and enjoy the fruits of one’s labor.

Sadly, the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops (USCCB) has dropped its earlier neutrality on ENDA and is now opposing legislation to ensure full employment freedom.  The bishops’ new stance violates their own long-standing position that gay and lesbian people should not be subject to unjust discrimination, and violates the most basic principle of fairness enunciated in The Catechism of the Catholic Church: “Every sign of unjust discrimination in their regard should be avoided.” 

The USCCB’s argument that religious organizations are not sufficiently protected is fear-based rather than fact-based.  ENDA fully protects religious organizations from employment decisions that would violate their religious tenets.  Religious organizations are allowed to hire, promote and fire people on the basis of religious belief, and ENDA would not change that religion-based right.   In effect, religious organizations are the only American employers who can discriminate in their employment practices.


Take Action!

Call or write your U.S. Senators and Representative and state “I am a Catholic and member of Catholics for Equality from your state and believe that all men and women should enjoy employment freedom and be given equal employment opportunity and job protections regardless of sexual orientation.  I ask that you vote for H.R. 3017 the inclusive Employment Non-Discrimination Act that includes protections for gender identity and expression.”

Capitol Hill Switchboard: 202.224.3121

Contact and Write Your Congressional Representative:  http://writerep.house.gov

Contact Your Senators: http://senate.gov/general/contact_information/senators_cfm.cfm


For more information about the Employment Non-Discrimination Act:

Wikepedia Basic Facts: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Employment_Non-Discrimination_Act

Human Rights Campaign: http://www.hrc.org/sites/passendanow/index.asp

National Center for Transgender Equality: http://transequality.org/ENDA.html


Catholics for Equality © 2010 • Catholics for Equality Foundation © 2010
PO Box 34765 • Washington, DC • 20043-4765 • tele: 202.657.6097